Week 4: The Hardest Discussion

As I am eating my carrots and hummus, I thought I would give an update.

Last week, I dragged and went to the gym once and I did a workout video at home that was brutal. I am not going to beat myself up about it but instead just get right back into it. I know I have to leave within the next hour, however, or the gym is a huge party and everyone is the world is invited.

I had a discussion with my friend J.R. after he returned from my Crossfit Box on Thursday. We talked about what works for us and what doesn’t work for us. I have been enjoying my time at Planet Fitness because I can go in, not talk to anyone, put my earbuds in, and rock out on my workout. This actually works best for me.

Our Crossfit Box, recently, decided to get political. While I am always down for community, it went in the opposite direction. Without details, we have an image around the box now that is a bit unsettling and I am not sure how to bring it up to my Head Coach. I want to go back to Crossfit, but I am battling with it. I could easily go to the box, keep my head down, workout, and move on. But, right now, I am not too comfortable with it.

Which sucks, honestly. But, I have to make a decision on if I go back or if I go to another box. That’s the joy, I think, of fitness in general. You don’t have to stick around for the same exact workout at the same exact location. I enjoy trying new things and I hope that you do, too.

What was nice about the conversation, however, was that we both were supportive of each other’s processes. I find that in the fitness world (of any kind), there is this weird competition that is unspoken of. If you Crossfit, people will tell you that you’re an addict. If you lift at a gym, but don’t Crossfit, you should be doing Crossfit. If your friend dances and does yoga throughout the week, they’ll probably tell you why it is the best.

Here’s the problem with that. There is no perfect workout regime that is a one-size fits all situations.

Any movement of any kind is good and you have to find out what works best for you. This goes along with, too, the other side of it. If your friend reaches out to you and asks what works best for you, always remember that it might not work best for them.

People have asked me about Crossfit and I tell them, “I love it! It’s a lot of fun and I really enjoy the community atmosphere. But, it’s not for everyone.” I see it all the time on social media where people will get in drag out fights over what is the best thing. Don’t be that person in the drag out fight. If someone asks, hey, what kinds of workouts do you do? Tell them! But, be supportive of their fitness decision. That’s the most important thing.

If you’re just starting in fitness, I highly suggest you try something new every week. If you have the funds, I suggest you try ClassPass in which you can try different classes through the month and see what works best for you. The whole point, however, of fitness and being the best you is you have to find what is best for you. Same goes for dieting. A nutritionist will never give the same exact diet to every person. They cater it to fit the person and see what works best for them.

What matters most is that you move. You get to decide how. No one else (except a licensed professional.)

I am off to the gym, now. I hope your weeks are amazing like you!

Day 3 of 2 Gyms.

Before I begin, I gotta give some mad love up to my Crossfit Buddies, Laura and Justin, who just got engaged last night. Laura and Justin, if you’re following along at home, are the reason I got into Crossfit. After talking to Laura about their wedding plans, I realize I have even more incentive to get my butt into shape. (Their wedding, my sister’s in September of this year, my best friend’s in July next year.)

Laura and Justin have been dating for a long time and they are crazy in love with one another. They’re super important to me. Here are their gains (Left side is most recently and right is roughly three years ago)!

(They inspire me daily).


So, signing up for a second gym was probably the best decision of my life.

Last night, Mike and I were supposed to go to Crossfit. He couldn’t make it (brewery kept him way over and Crossfit closed) so I went to the gym all by myself. I have a ton of energy that I have been lacking in the past few weeks (not going to CF or any gym will do that to you).

Planet Fitness is great for just walking into and doing my business and walking out. It’s a super zero hassle life and I really appreciate that I can go to it whenever I want. Tomorrow, I have to go in the afternoon but god knows before 4:00 because that place gets insane at 4:00.

So far this week, I have completed:

  • Monday: 60 minutes on the treadmill.
    • 30 minutes HIIT. 30 minute brisk walk. I was so excited about the gym that I lost track of what the hell time it was.
  • Tuesday: 30 minutes on the treadmill.
    • 30 minutes HIIT.
  • Wednesday: Bodyweight Workout
    • 50-40-30-20-10 of Squats, Pushups, Jumping Jacks, and Sit-ups.

My only hang-up is FitBit. It doesn’t record my treadmill work properly. It’s probably because my hands are on the heartbeat railing but I am going to test that theory out again.

Water intake is still going well. I have my water bottle next to me at all times.

Eating healthy? Got that in the bag. I am actually really excited because at the store yesterday, I was eyeing the Chia Seeds and said, “Alright, let’s do it.” I am trying to make Chia Pudding and as I am typing this, I realized I forgot sweetener or honey in it. I will report back on its success. I used Noosa Yoghurt which is – y’all – bomb.com. I love them.

I ordered a new gym bag!

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I never needed one for Crossfit, really. I would tuck away my Converse in the car that was two feet away and brought my water bottle in. We also never had lockers so there wasn’t a purpose for it.

Now, at the other gym, I have to have a lock, facial wipes, and now – I need to add toiletries and emergency stuff, too. I have a lock for the locker, might as well use my gym bag right. I am thinking of adding first aid items in there, too. Basically, I will fill this bad boy with good things that are needed 🙂

Thursday and Friday – I am going to Planet for the elliptical for HIIT and then also do some weight training.

Saturday – I am going to walk in my first protest! Pretty exciting!

Sunday – Rest Day.

So far, so good! I hope your weeks are going super well!

If you’re new to a gym.

I can never recall my feelings or reactions from the times I started a gym because months pass and in my experience, I forget all of the emotions that go into it.

Yesterday, I started my first day at Planet Fitness. I know what you’re thinking because I have thought it, too. In my time at Crossfit, I have learned Planet Fitness is a dirty set of words and speaking about them positively will warrant a few eyebrow raises around the room. Now, the same goes for Planet Fitness. It’s not a place that is welcoming to Crossfit members either. This two year understanding brought me to the idea that I don’t need to impress or please either gym in my dedication.

I can tell you that Crossfit is the most high intensity workout I have ever experienced. It works. But, it works for me. It doesn’t work for everyone. I love the community and that they cheer you on till the last second. Crossfit is good for you if you want a challenge, want to work hard, and hustle through workouts with some great friends.

I can tell you Planet Fitness is a great starter gym if you haven’t been before. They do a few things that I don’t agree with (Pizza and Bagel Day) but they are a great place to go with a whole host of people of different ages, sizes, and workout styles. Planet Fitness is a good place to go if you are just going to workout and want a place that has machines that are capable of getting you to your goal.

TL;DR – No gym is perfect for everyone. But, there is always a workout/gym that is perfect for you. If you’re not sure what is best for you, try something new every week till it ‘clicks’.

Most gyms, Crossfit especially, will give you a free trial run. Always give it at least a week (3+ workouts) to really figure out if this is right for you.

If you’re new to a gym, you might be nervous.

You might sit in the parking lot all dressed up in your gym wear and make excuses to not go inside. You might drive around instead and waste the time you could be at the gym. You might make an excuse that your phone needs to charge in order to work out.

I know. I have been there.

But, let me tell you, once you walk in and say hello to the front desk/coach and you realize everyone is there to just workout? It becomes easier. You just have to take that first step into the facility. Once you do, it’s a cake walk.

If you’re new to a gym, you might be super excited.

And that’s awesome! You should be excited! You’re on your way to a healthier you!

If you’re new to a gym, you might only be focusing on fitness.

A LOT of people make this mistake. Losing weight comes from not only diet but your eating habits and visa versa. You need to make sure you’re eating right, drinking plenty of water, and exercising. Don’t lose sight of that!

Most importantly, listen to your body. There’s a difference in feeling of, “Oh this is challenging!” and “Please stop. This is too much.” You don’t have to workout 5 hours a day, 7 days a week to achieve your goal. Listen to what your body has to say.

If you’re new to a gym, you might feel intimidated.

When I started with Crossfit, it was the most intimidating first day of my life. I looked around and realized that everyone was in shape and I wouldn’t be able to match them. This is a normal feeling but I am here to tell you why you shouldn’t feel intimidated.

Everyone is at a gym for one goal – to work out. They’re not there for anyone else. They’re not there to mock other people. They’re not there to single you out. I have heard one or two stories where there has been a situation like that in 30 years of my living life. I can’t promise you that people won’t be jerks but I can tell you that it is insanely unlikely that they will be.

I have done Crossfit, a Global Gym, a College Gym. In my experience, I have never seen someone be mean to another person. In fact, people are actually helpful. My first day at Crossfit, one of our CF Friends Angelo, noticed Mike had a knee injury. He promptly walked over and said, “I noticed you had a knee injury. Let me show you how to do squats in a way that won’t mess up your knees.” This is very much the same across the board at most places.

The short version of all of this is that people just want to go to a gym to workout. No one is there for you. You are there for you.

If you’re new to a gym, you might not want to ask questions or you want to seem knowledgable (You’re not and that’s okay).

To prevent injury, it is the smartest idea to ask questions. If you don’t know how a machine works or you don’t know how a movement goes, ask someonePlanet Fitness has a reputation of not knowing a lot about fitness. If you’re in a gym where staff doesn’t really know, ask someone nearby. Again, people are willing to help you.

This prevents injury. If you’re unsure, just ask. When you get home, you also can research online or through reading material, too.

I also have a few fitness kids on retainer which is helpful as well.

Do not crowdsource on social media as it will end very poorly. A friend of mine crowd sources everything from diet to fitness to everything in between. Do not do this as it will end up with 100 voices screaming over each other on what works best for them. You gotta do what’s best for you. Ask someone who knows what they’re talking about.

If you’re new to a gym, you might be intimidated by your choice of all the machines.

I find that exploring a gym is the fun part. I hate the treadmill but love the elliptical. Don’t try to do a ton of machines at once. Take a walk around, make note of what you want to try, and then give it a go after you understand how it works.

You should try everything in your gym at least once. You might find that you like something that you thought you would hate!

If you’re new to a gym, you might want to exhaust yourself.

When I go into the gym for the first time, I go at it like a bull. I want to run 50 miles, lift 8,000,000 lbs, and so on. It’s very exciting to get healthy again, I know! But, take it slow if you haven’t been to the gym or been active in a long time. You don’t want to overdo it.

Last night, I simply walk/ran on the treadmill for an hour. Nothing crazy.

Remember, your body needs rest days. Working out 5-6 times a week is good but you have to have a day for your body to relax and recoup! I know a few friends who do 7 times a week which is a little too much but if you’re hell bent on doing 7 days, do light work on day 7 like yoga or a light walk.

If you’re new to a gym, you might want to buy everything in preparation.

I researched Planet Fitness and found out they have lockers, but you have to provide your own pad lock. I went to CVS, bought myself a $5.00 padlock and headed to the gym.

I purchased a gym bag today on Amazon for $20.

Water bottle? I already had. Gym clothes? Already had.

Start slow on buying things. I find that when I finish a month or two of working out and eating healthy, that I reward myself with a new item. New outfit, new workout bra, new shoes. You name it. Some people even do the $1 per workout and then take the money to buy things. If that works for you, do it!

For working out, I can tell you the most important item you will need is good shoes. Good shoes will support you, help you do cardio a little bit better, and will lower back pain and leg pain. I learned this the hard way when I used old, beat up sneakers for my first day at Crossfit. A month later, I got a good pair of running shoes from Nike. It was a life changer. So, if you’re going to buy anything, buy a new pair of kicks. You back will thank me!

If you’re new to a gym, you might beat yourself up over failing.

I have met quite a few athletes in my day. I can promise you that each and every one of them, no matter how fit or healthy they are, slip. I have never met a person who didn’t skip a day at the gym or who cheated on their diet.

And no one judges you on that. I have slipped. My Instagram partners have slipped. My coaches have slipped.

If you mess up, try again the next day. It takes 21 days for our bodies to form habits. If you can crush that first month, it’ll just be easier in time. I know you can do this, keep at it.

If anything, if you’re new to the gym – go you. Stick with it and you’ll be happy with the results.

February Plan

So, January (after Midwinter), I:

  • Tracked food.
  • Walked 10k a day.
  • Drank a whole butt load of water.
  • Ate healthy

In February, I plan to:

  • Continue January Goals.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Go to Planet Fitness 3 times a week for cardio and will increase times when I get comfortable with three.
  • Go to Crossfit once – three times a week with Mike.
    • However many times Mike does not go to CF, I’ll supplement weight training at PF.

Exciting news, too. My friend Leia, my very best girl, has been wanting to get in shape for some time. Crossfit was too much heavy lifting, yoga was expensive, and so on. I proposed Planet Fitness to her and she is all about it. So, I have a workout partner! Which is pretty exciting.

I called PF to see if I can come in tonight, late, when Mike goes to bed. They said absolutely as they are staffed 24-7. I am pretty excited that I will be able to go whenever I want.

I am feeling really motivated right now. I know that if I can’t go to Crossfit, I have a 24-7 gym at my disposal. No excuses.

2016: Year in Review

Well, it’s almost the New Year.

This year has been up and down and back again. I was pretty consistent with diet and workout up until last month where it turned sporadic.

We have a new team member that I needed to train and now, he’s off for a week so I am juggling two jobs. Late hours have happened but it ends this weekend. 

I did, however, complete one major goal.

That major goal was doing a box jump. This seems SUPER easy to do but my brain would not allow me to even breathe near a box. This was huge for me.

I did go to Crossfit three-four times a week up until last month.

I went over 200# on my backsquat.

I went over 275# on my deadlift.

I had some challenging weeks with Coach Carl. He’s off the map again so I am on my own. This time, I am not waiting around for him. I love and respect my Coach but the distance of two states seems to be almost impossible. I think I was in my mind that I would reach my goal this year but I waited and I can’t do that to myself.

Eating healthy is becoming second nature for Mike and I. It was a challenge, don’t get me wrong but finally he likes healthy stuff and we had a nice long talk yesterday. Now that Mike is a brewer, he works out every single day and asking to do Crossfit is a daunting task. Since I am at my desk all day, I don’t get this luxury. But, after explaining how important it is to me, he understands that he has to go with me. I love support systems. They work well.

I picked up smoking again (I know, I know) but gonna try again after Midwinter. I told Mike I would quit before and he laughed and laughed. That convention is the most stressful one next to GenCon. So, Tuesday after Midwinter, I am gonna try again. For those who have done this, it’s not easy. I just gotta pull the trigger and stick with it.

So, now onto 2017.

  • Run a mile, unbroken. 
  • Quit smoking.
  • Crossfit at least three times a week.
  • Keep up with my FitBit steps.
  • If I miss Crossfit, I will do an at home WOD, no questions.
  • Switch from beer to red wine.
  • Continue eating healthy.
  • Pay more attention to form. 
  • Do an assisted pull-up. Another head game of mine. I know I can do it but my body is not having it.
  • Do the Rennisance Diet after Midwinter.
  • Check in and record my progress.
  • Use a measuring tape for real and throw out the scale.

Rewards for completion:

  • New wardrobe.
  • Scrub cleaning the bathroom of smoke stains and re painting it. 
  • Teeth whitening.
  • New workout gear.
  • A rower.

What are your resolutions? I believe in you. I know we can do this together.

New Week: New Me

First and foremost, MAD LOVE to my Crossfit Mermaid as she is all sunshine in my Instagram feed! Also, thought of her today, even! She’s my Crossfitspiration on the regular and I am so happy for her! 

We are on Day #2 at Crossfit.

  • Mike has been more than lax on going for two weeks so we are changing that. It’s super important for relationships to support one another. I cannot stress that enough. When your SO eats unhealthy, it’s harder to eat healthy. When they don’t work out, you’ll find more excuses. He promised to help me hustle. Mike also hustles at a brewery all day and he’s losing weight fast so it’s harder for him to go to Crossfit after a day of deadlifting barrels. But, we are sticking with it. 
  • Coach Carl is off the map again so I am by myself. I am less disappointed this time, though. He gave me the right tools so I just got to use them. 
  • Monday was Cindy. Today was a ladder workout of 10-1 Clean and Jerks and 1-10 Barbell Push-ups. Seems fast, yeah? You’re doing 45 reps total and let me tell you that last Clean and Jerk was brutal. But, I did it. 
  • Katy was there today, which was nice. My swolesister. She’s got a new schedule with waitressing but we got together and chatted a bit.
  • Diet is back to easy. Once I get over Monday, the rest of the week is a piece of cake. We had chicken and peppers yesterday and then tortilla soup today. 
  • Speaking of diet the only real challenge is forcing myself to eat. I struggle at weight loss due to two factors. One, I eat like once a day. Two, I drink. One is an easy fix as I have set reminders for myself. Two, is gonna go away for a month in December so I can really see how much it impacts me (Spoiler: I know the answer).
  • My plan is to go Renaissance Diet after Midwinter. I have to train myself to eat five meals a day, eat more protein, and workout five days a week. So, it’s getting comfortable with those things before pulling the trigger.
  • Breakfast (thanks to Lesley) is now Epic Bars which are literal meat bars. They’re so fucking good, y’all. Packed with Protein. Grass fed. Paleo. Obsessed. 
  • I got Mike Thug Kitchen’s newest book which is awesome. I love them because they’re vegetarian and healthy but you can easily toss some protein in there.
  • FitBit is still rockin’ though yesterday after Crossfit when I hit sync, it erased all of my friggin’ steps for the day. My IPhone knows I did it, at least. Doesn’t mean it won’t stop me. 
  • On the emotional side of things, this election hit me in the gut last week. I skipped gym time to be with my marginalized friends and support them and I ain’t even mad about it, to be totally honest with you.
  • Anxiety is more under control. I lash out less. I am coming to terms with a lot of things. I am letting go. It’s a process but I am getting where I need to be.

Good is not a thing you are, it’s a thing you do.

Get out there and vote, y’all! Tomorrow is the last day!

Onto fitness!

So, I have been doing the small meals every day and that seems to be going pretty well! Yesterday, however, I made the largest mistake.

We were out of food. This never ever happens. It was 12 midnight. We caved and got fast food. And mind you, not good fast food. McDonald’s. Which we gave up for seven years but it was the only thing open. Even with a grilled chicken salad, it still made me violently ill.

After being sick all morning, we vowed to never do that again. Never again have bare cabinets or just go to bed starving because why in the hell did we think this was a good idea.

I have had nothing to eat today because I am so sick from that. But, good news with gaining back my appetite. Mike is making green beans and pumpkin wheat ravioli tonight with a killer kale salad.

After we do the WOD. It doesn’t look terrible but y’all know how this goes. The easy looking ones are the literal worst.

This month at work, we have to have a coworker make a “morning workout routine” for us. I got Pauline, a yoga instructor. So she designed me a morning salutation workout. I am very excited to do it!

December, I am giving up alcohol. I want to see how drastic it affects my weight loss (I already know this answer). 

I am still training for Savage Race. Now with it being colder out, I gotta grab my cardio off the rower.

FitBit continues to go well. My sister is getting way more competitive and my friends are, too! It’s a good time every week.

And that’s about it for today, y’all.